I waited months for the conjunction of Venus and Jupiter in the night sky this July where the two planets would be separated by less than a full moon’s width. For weeks leading up to the event we had record rainfall and complimentary cloud cover. I feared the uncommon event would pass without a chance to photograph it – and my fears came true. On the night of closest approach, the skies were cloud laden and rain drizzled over my hopes. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get a picture that night but seized the opportunity the next evening when the clouds parted for a few fleeting moments. I wouldn’t consider it a great image artistically, but being able to make out the disks (or, more accurately, the disk and crescent) of two beautiful planets in the same frame is rewarding in and of itself. (If you look closely, you can make out one of the Galilean moons… which is actually two moons converging themselves!)
Over in the east a startling orange-red full moon loomed over the trees as I prepared for the conjunction image. Ironically, this turned out to be my favorite image of the night despite how easy it was to capture and when you take into account how difficult the conjunction image was; I tried to balance the exposure and other settings so you can make out both planets (and moons) without any of them being drowned out by the other.